Information and guidelines about the novel coronavirus continue to change on a daily basis. The District continues to work with our partners at the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services (DHSS) and the Lincoln County Department of Health as they monitor and manage the current situation with both the flu and novel coronavirus. The Missouri DHSS has developed this helpful fact sheet and has a website dedicated to information about this new illness. The Center for Disease Control also provides resources and information about the coronavirus. Below find the correspondences sent to staff and families regarding this ongoing situation.
March 30, 2020
Dear LCR3 Families,
At this time, the Lincoln County R-III School District will be extending our closure through May 1, 2020. Following guidance from the Lincoln County Health Department, we feel it is necessary for our continued effort to help reduce the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19).
Providing quality education, a safe environment, and exceptional services for our students, staff, and community has always been our top priority. While we know this closure is in the best interest of our community as a whole, we are aware it certainly creates many challenges for our students, families, and staff. We would like to take this opportunity to thank all of our district families as we know that you are working through these unprecedented times alongside us. Your day-to-day looks different and so does ours. We appreciate all that you are doing to support your children, your personal workload, and your household.
We will continue to have educational opportunities for our families throughout the duration of our extended closure. Students and parents should have access to materials through April 4th and additional information will be sent in the coming days. Free meals for children and teens through 18 will continue to be provided at Hawk Point Elementary, Cuivre Park Elementary, Main Street Elementary, and Ninth Grade Center from 10:30 - 1:00, Monday through Friday.
As a reminder, this school closure is in response to the current public health crisis. The focus should remain on preventing the spread of Coronavirus (COVID-19). Please be mindful of the following:
- wash your hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds
- cover your nose and mouth when coughing and sneezing (cough/sneeze into your sleeve or a tissue)
- follow the stay at home order issued by the Lincoln County Health Department
- avoid close contact with anyone with cold or flu-like symptoms
Please continue to refer to the Lincoln County Health Department (www.lchdmo.org), the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services (www.dhss.mo.gov), and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (www.cdc.gov) for up-to-date and accurate information on the coronavirus.
As noted above, LCR3 is committed to continuing to provide exceptional services to our community. While these services look vastly different than business as usual, do know that we are here to support our students, families, and staff.
Yours in Education,
Mark S. Penny, Superintendent
March 20, 2020
The following are the latest updates regarding the coronavirus as they pertain to our district.
The Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education announced yesterday that Missouri will be canceling statewide assessments (MAP and EOC) for this school year. ACT and SAT testing has also been postponed at this time. We will communicate a reschedule date as soon as it is announced.
Make-Up Hours Waived
DESE also announced that schools will not be required to make-up hours missed due to the COVID-19 public health emergency. As of today, our last day of school will continue to be Wednesday, May 20, and will follow our regular early release Wednesday schedule.
Student Medications and Personal Items
School administrators and nurses will be on-site at all locations from 11:00 AM to 7:00 PM on Tuesday, March 24, by appointment, for families to retrieve their student’s medications and/or necessary personal items. Please call your child’s building on Monday, March 23 during regular school hours to set an appointment.
COVID-19 Test Results
We have been informed that the COVID-19 test result of an LCR3 family member has been received and has been confirmed as negative. We are appreciative of the family and the Lincoln County Health Department for their partnership and prompt action in mitigating the potential spread of illness in our area.
While the District is observing the recommended extended closure, all buildings will be closed to visitors. If you need to visit a District campus, please call ahead to make an appointment.
We also ask that you continue to follow social distancing guidelines as recommended by the Lincoln County Health Department, including the updated recommendations for travelers. Any person that has traveled internationally, via domestic air, via cruise ship, or to/through states with community spread of COVID-19 should self-quarantine for 14 days. Further guidance can be found on the CDC website www.cdc.gov.
Virtual Spirit Week
During this extended closure, LCR3 would like to stay connected by hosting a Virtual Spirit Week. Find the details and join the fun by visiting the District’s Facebook page @LincolnCountyR3Schools. #RIIICares
March 18, 2020
First and foremost, thank you for your patience as we continue to work through this constantly evolving situation. We have a strong and resilient community, and I have been heartened by the generosity that is already being poured out for our students and families. The following are updates that we have available at this time.
We are committed to lessening the burden on our families as much as possible. As mentioned in our previous communication, meals will be offered for children and teens through age 18 beginning March 23. Meals can be picked up at Cuivre Park Elementary, Main Street Elementary, Hawk Point Elementary, and Ninth Grade Center Monday through Friday between 10:30 am and 1:00 pm at no cost. Individuals will not be asked to exit their vehicles as service will be delivered curbside in a grab-and-go style. Any child through age 18 is eligible for a meal regardless of school status and household income. As a requirement of the Federally funded Seamless Summer Meal Program, the child receiving the meal must be present. The district will not be delivering meals at this time but will monitor the need for this service.
Following spring break this week, our educators will be collaborating on Monday, March 23, to prepare alternate methods of instruction for students. Information will be provided through Canvas (grades 6-12) and e-mail (grades PreK-5) no later than Tuesday. At this time, all instruction will be a reinforcement of essential skills that have been taught previously. No new learning will be introduced.
If you are unable to receive or send communications online, please reach out to your building on Monday, March 23, to request paper copies. Upon request, hard copies will be available to pick up at your child’s building between 11:00 am and 7:00 pm Tuesday, 3/24. Building administrators and nurses will be available at this time for families to collect medications and needed personal items from their child’s building. Additional communication from your child’s building will be sent next week as well.
Third-quarter grades will be distributed during the week of March 30.
Our District is continuing to work very closely with the Lincoln County Health Department regarding all restrictions and closures. Fortunately, there are no positive cases of COVID-19 in Lincoln County at this time.
Currently, we are still planning to return on April 6. However, should a long-term closure become necessary, we will communicate through our regular channels. All school events including, but not limited to, sports, extra-curricular activities, Prom, and ACT/SAT testing have been postponed. Community usage of our facilities has also been discontinued until further notice.
It is our goal to provide all experiences and opportunities to our students that we can through the remainder of this school year. However, there are still many unknowns. For example, we are still waiting to receive updates from District partners regarding graduation, Missouri State MAP and EOC testing, and the potential need for make-up dates. As information becomes available we will be sure to communicate with you.
As this situation continues to develop, we urge families to stay up-to-date through resources provided by the Lincoln County Health Department, www.lchdmo.org, and the Centers for Disease Control, www.cdc.gov. All District communication can also be found on our website at www.troy.k12.mo.us/health. Thank you again for your patience and partnership.
Wishing you good health,
Mark S. Penny
Superintendent of Schools
March 16, 2020
Dear LCR3 families and staff:
Following this morning’s meeting with the Lincoln County Health Department regarding the coronavirus (COVID-19), it has been decided that it is in the best interest of our students, staff, and community to close all LCR3 schools, including Early Childhood and latchkey services, March 23 through April 3, 2020. At this time, classes will be set to resume on April 6. All extracurricular activities and facility usage will also be canceled until further notice.
As you know, the safety and security of our students and staff are a top priority, and we feel that these measures are necessary. We are a learning institution, and providing a quality education to every child in our district is also at the top of our list. We recognize the hardship this places on families and will do our best to provide structure, learning, and community support through this time of uncertainty.
There are many questions about the next steps, schedules, and support. I assure you that our team is working diligently to prepare and move forward in the best way possible. As we continue to plan, information will be forthcoming.
We are working on at-home activities and the processes available to put these in the hands of each student. In addition to the alternative methods of instruction, the District is working on ways to make take-out meals available. More information will be provided in the next few days.
Our amazing custodial and maintenance staff are already at work deep cleaning our buildings and buses to prepare for when our students and staff return.
Throughout our closure, we ask that students and staff follow the CDC guidance - practice social distancing, stay at home, wash your hands, and practice good respiratory hygiene. Contact the Lincoln County Health Department with questions or concerns specifically related to the coronavirus (COVID-19), www.lchdmo.org/covid19.
Thank you for your continued patience and partnership as we work to slow the spread of the coronavirus and keep our families safe.
Mark S. Penny
Superintendent of Schools
March 15, 2020
Good evening LCR3 families and staff:
As you are most likely aware, concerns around the coronavirus continue in Missouri and around the country. Today, many districts in the St. Louis and St. Charles counties announced extended closures. Tomorrow morning I will meet with fellow Lincoln County superintendents, Emergency Management, and the Lincoln County Health Department to discuss the next steps for the schools in our county. I assure you that the safety and welfare of our students, staff, and community will be top of mind. Fortunately, we are on spring break this week. However, we have begun planning in anticipation of an extended closure. We will continue to work through plans for alternative methods of instruction and meal opportunities for those in need.
As we move forward with planning, we will provide updated communications as they become available. Please continue to monitor the CDC and Lincoln County Health Department for updates regarding social distancing and prevention methods. We are grateful for your patience and partnership during these unprecedented circumstances.
Yours in Education,
Mark S. Penny
All games, practices, open gyms, weights, extracurricular activities & events for the Lincoln County R-3 School District are canceled until further notice. We will provide updates when information becomes available.
March 13, 2020
Dear Lincoln County R-III Families,
As you are aware, information around the coronavirus (COVID-19) is rapidly changing. We are working closely with the Lincoln County Health Department as we move through this unprecedented situation. As I write this letter, there have been no positive cases in Lincoln County. In regards to the communication sent earlier this week, we are still waiting for results and may not receive them until early next week. Updates will be provided as available. It is important to note, no students have been tested at this time.
I wanted to share with you what the district is planning and some guidance from local, state, and federal health officials for moving forward. At this time, classes will resume as scheduled following Spring Break, on March 23. We are working closely with the Lincoln County Health Department and they have not advised the closure of any county schools at this time. If there is a confirmed case of coronavirus (COVID-19) in the Lincoln County R-III School District (LCR3), the health department will guide us on what actions need to be taken and determine if a school(s) should be closed. Any closure directive from the state of Missouri or the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education would impact LCR3, and we are working on Alternative Methods of Instruction that we will be able to put in place. Information regarding this is outlined below.
Maintenance and custodial staff will be working through Spring Break to disinfect all schools, support facilities, and buses in an effort to create the safest, most comfortable environment possible for students and staff. With that being said, as we go forward we all must heed the recommendations of medical experts at the local, state, and federal levels.
In the case of closure, teachers will contact students and families through e-mail regarding assignments. If you do not have access to e-mail, please contact your child’s school following Spring Break (March 16-20) to make arrangements for communication and pick-up of assignments/resources. Teachers will begin preparing the alternative methods of instruction plans on March 23rd. It is important to note that we are not foreshadowing a closure, rather preparing for the possibility.
Families of students and staff who have or plan to travel overseas or within the United States are advised to check the Centers for Disease Control website for the most current list of locations that could put you at risk due to identified cases of coronavirus (COVID-19). Contact the Lincoln County Health Department (636-383-3231) before returning to school or work.
- Should health officials require a student to remain at home because of coronavirus (COVID-19) symptoms or recent travel, absences will be excused and will not affect perfect attendance or A+ status.
As always, our school nurses will be monitoring students and staff. In conjunction with the Lincoln County Health Department, they will refer students or staff exhibiting symptoms to the proper medical officials. Please understand that this heightened awareness is likely to increase the number of students who are sent home by our clinics. We suggest that, as a family, you build a plan for how your child would be picked up quickly should the nurse send them home or in the case of a school closure. Parents can also help us monitor the situation by providing specific information if you are calling your student in absent. Together with teachers, custodians, and secretaries, our nurses work with students daily to reinforce the healthy habits put forth by experts as the best tools to prevent cold and flu, which are also the best tools to prevent coronavirus:
- Wash hands often with soap and water
- If not available, use hand sanitizer with an alcohol content higher than 60 percent
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands
- Avoid contact with people who are sick
- Stay home while you are sick
- Avoid close contact with others
- Cover your mouth/nose with a tissue or sleeve when coughing or sneezing
Finally, I would also refer you to the National Association of School Psychologists website where you can find some resources on talking to your children as we move through this unprecedented and fluid situation. Feeling safe, comfortable and welcome at school is one of the most important factors in our children’s well-being and in their learning. I hope this resource helps you open a line of communication with your children and supports those who are feeling anxious. I would like to encourage you to check your email often, as well as our website (www.troy.k12.mo.us/health). We will provide updates as information is available.
Yours in Education,
Mark S. Penny
Superintendent of Schools
March 11, 2020
Dear LCR3 Families,
We were informed today that a family member of two Troy South Middle School students and one Troy Buchanan High School student has been tested for COVID-19. At this time, the test results have not been received. The family has taken precautions and is currently self-isolated. Furthermore, they and the district continue to work closely with the Lincoln County Health Department (LCHD). As soon as the results are received, LCHD will be in contact with district administration.
If the case is positive, LCHD will work closely with our staff to identify and notify any potential contacts that may need to self-isolate. Additional cleaning protocols remain in place for all locations.
As the potential for the virus to spread in our region continues, it is possible that there will be positive cases in our county or even in our district. The district will continue to follow our Pandemic Plan that can be found on our website at www.troy.k12.mo.us/health. Previous communications and resources are also available on this site. The best resources on the COVID-19 can be found on the LCHD and Centers for Disease Control websites, www.lchdmo.org or www.cdc.gov.
If you or your family choose to travel in the coming weeks, we encourage you to monitor the CDC website for travel precautions and general preparedness information, as it continues to evolve every few days. Please contact the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services Hotline with concerns of illness, 1-877-435-8411.
The Lincoln County R-III District remains committed to the safety and welfare of all students and staff. We appreciate your understanding and partnership as we navigate this constantly evolving situation.
Yours in Education,
Mark S. Penny, Ed.D.
Superintendent of Schools
March 9, 2020
The District continues to closely monitor the situation regarding the coronavirus and administration remains in close contact with the Lincoln County Health Department. As of this past weekend, one presumptive positive case of COVID-19 was confirmed in St. Louis County, Missouri.
Increased disinfection protocols for our schools remain in place. LCR3 is also taking this opportunity to remind students and staff about good hand hygiene and to cover coughs and sneezes. Students are being given opportunities to wash their hands during the school day. In locations where access to soap and water is limited, alcohol-based hand sanitizer is also available.
Our Facilities Department uses a broadcast disinfectant that is known to be virucidal and effective in killing most viruses. Custodians are wiping down surfaces such as tables, doorknobs, and drinking fountains on a regular basis. We have recently added more disinfection of school buses as well.
Resources and updates, as available, can be found on this page. If you have any questions or concerns, you can also call the Lincoln County Health Department at 636-528-6117.
March 3, 2020
LCR3 Families and Employees,
Should the situation arise that your children/students are worried, concerned, or asking about the coronavirus, below are some talking points and resources to help guide your conversations.
Currently Known Facts
- Coronavirus (COVID-19) is a new virus that has been found to cause respiratory illness in humans. The signs and symptoms include fever, cough, and shortness of breath.
- It can be spread from person to person.
- The greatest risk of infection is to those that live in China or have been around someone who has recently been to China.
- There are cases in the US. However, there are NO cases in Missouri or, more specifically, Lincoln County at this time. Furthermore, the CDC is still stating that the risk of contracting the Coronavirus in the U.S. is low.
- There is currently NO vaccine.
- At this time, the only treatment is to treat the symptoms that patients are experiencing.
- The best way to protect yourself against any virus is to
- Avoid those exposed to the virus,
- Practice PROPER HAND WASHING often and for at least 20 seconds with soap and water,
- Avoid touching your eyes, mouth, or nose with unwashed hands, and
- Use hand sanitizer with 60% or more alcohol only when soap and water are not available.
- Stay home if you are sick.
- Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue or the inside of your elbow.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
Dealing with Emotions, Bullying, or Uncaring Behaviors
- Diseases do not discriminate, and neither should we. Individuals of Asian descent or heritage are no more likely to contract the Coronavirus than anyone else.
- If students are feeling concerned or worried, encourage them to talk to a parent, teacher, or another trusted adult. Remind kids of the things they can control to help decrease the risk- wash hands, cover sneezes and coughs.
- Be aware of your own behaviors. It's important for parents and teachers to understand the effect their own behaviors and emotions can have on children. If you're visibly upset or react in a way that suggests you're fearful, they'll take their cues from you. Just remember to stick to the facts that we know. Be honest and communicate at a developmentally appropriate level.
- Ensure you are using credible sources for information like the World Health Organization, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services, and the Lincoln County Health Department. Additional resources are listed below.
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention - www.cdc.gov/COVID19
- Lincoln County Health Department - https://lchdmo.org/covid19
- World Health Organization - “Novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV)”
- NY Times - “Talking to Teens and Tweens About the Coronavirus”
- CBC Canada - “Get the Facts on the Coronavirus”
- NPR - “What Kids Want to Know About the Coronavirus”
- PBS Kids - "How to Talk to Your Kids About Coronavirus"
February 27, 2020
Dear Lincoln County R-III Families,
As the cold and flu season is in full swing, all schools throughout our District have seen an increase in the number of students with influenza-like symptoms in the last couple of weeks. As a reminder, please do not send your child to school if they are feeling sick. If your child is sick, please keep them home until he/she is fever free for 24 hours without fever reducing medication, adhering to the District’s Student Illness Exclusion Guidelines. The flu is a contagious respiratory illness caused by the influenza viruses and can cause mild to severe illness. Symptoms of influenza can vary, but generally include a high fever, headache, chills, body aches, sore throat and cough. Additional, helpful information about the flu can be found on the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) website.
Unfortunately, the 2019-20 flu season has been complicated by recent reports of a novel(new) coronavirus. Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses with common symptoms similar to the flu, which include fever, cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing. Fourteen confirmed cases have been reported within the United States. At this time, there have been no positive cases confirmed in Missouri. The Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services (DHSS) has established a dedicated website which also links to information from the CDC, for those seeking more information about this novel coronavirus.
We urge all families to continue the practice of maintaining healthy behaviors necessary during any cold and flu season, including the below:
- Wash your hands frequently with soap and water, or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer if soap and water are not available.
- Cover your nose and mouth with a sleeve or a tissue when coughing and sneezing.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and moth to prevent the spread of germs.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces and objects, such as toys and doorknobs, especially if someone is sick.
- Stay home when you are sick.
The District will continue to work with local and state partners at the Lincoln County Health Department and DHSS as they monitor and manage the current situation with both the flu and the novel Coronavirus. Please be assured that District staff will continue to keep an eye on illness in our school, as is our standard policy. As always we will share additional information with school communities as needed.
Thank you for your help in keeping our students, employees, and community healthy during this cold and flu season.
Mende Kemper, RN, BSN
LCR3 District Health Coordinator